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Business conference to charge Botswana’s high income economy dream

Publishing Date : 14 August, 2018

Author : REARABILWE RAMAPHANE

Botswana ‘s private sector mouth piece  Business Botswana(BB) in collaboration Government will next month  host the annual NBC(NBC) in  Francistown. The Conference is Botswana‘s major meet between government policy makers, stakeholders, business community and the entire private sector.


 The high level event provides a platform for interactive dialogue, views exchange and policy review on the country‘s economic transformation agenda. When briefing the media this week, Business Botswana (BB) revealed that the conference will spark conversations around pushing Botswana’s High income economy dream. Going into its second year in partnership with Botswana’s leading bank First National Bank Botswana (FNBB) the conference brings a revamped and charged platform for transformative engagement.


Bigger, better and more interactive the event will be held under the theme “Breakthrough a High-Income Botswana- the Role of the Private Sector in Charting the Path.”  The organizers In addition to the usual officiating and address by President Mokgweetsi Masisi, one of the new exciting features in this year’s conference is an intimate interactive session with president Maisi titled “A Conversation with the President” which will provide an opportunity for the business sector to hear President Masisi’s thoughts on the growth of business in Botswana.


When giving a brief overview of event organizing committee chairman of the NBC Tobake Kobedi said presentations and views exchanges will be deliberate on identifying economic paths to move Botswana from an upper middle income to a high income economy in line with Vision 2036. He said the conference will bring together top government officials and business leaders under one roof to formulate new ideas and craft new innovative paths that endeavor to transform Botswana‘s economy to export  and private sector led  


“The aim is to see broaden domestic investment and see Botswana businesses compete on global scale, “he said. Kobedi explained that the conference’s deliberation and discussions will be anchored around three key topics being Innovation, human Capital and the Small Medium Enterprises Sector.


He observed that  the NBC was alive to the private sector’s role  in gearing the country towards a high income economy and  by giving the business community  the platform reflect and facilitates  their participatory  role and contribution towards  the national Vision 2036. The conference has attracted a number of other partnerships and sponsorship such as Air Botswana and Botswana Railways as both entered in an agreement with Business Botswana to offer transportation for delegates and participants at tailor made packages.


 Kobedi also highlighted that Bank of Botswana will host the participants to a cocktail dinner on the sidelines of the conference at which De Beers Botswana Director and Vision 2036 Chairman Neo Moroka will deliver Key note address in a informal interactive discussion over meals and drinks.


Marketing and Communication Director at FNBB Obonye Malope noted that it was compelling for the bank to join forces with Business Botswana  again this year because FNB as a financial institution    was alive to efforts of propelling the country from middle income to a high income.  “We as FNBB are proud official partners of NBC, for the second time as we want to provide the private sector with innovative business solutions and want to be drivers of transformative economic development in the country," she said.


Malope reiterated that the conference theme was also speaking to FNBB's strategic commitment to foster growth and economic diversity from which all Batswana can and should benefit. Malope also noted that, "As the leading Bank in Botswana, we recognize the key role that we play in facilitating the growth of a more diverse economy. This is why we have partnered with the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development to introduce a Youth Value Proposition that provides youth funded businesses with a solution that includes Transactional, Investment, Insurance and Lending products.


Malope further noted that FNBB as a business stands to benefit from a more developed, vibrant and high income economy that Botswana seeks to archive. “We are committed to using all of our spheres of influence  to contribute to this dream and this partnership with Business Botswana and Botswana Government to bring you this  impactful event  is one of a number of initiatives to this effect ,We also recognize that youth businesses have great and untapped potential to create employment and drive economic diversification and it is our responsibility as Botswana’s largest bank to help drive this” She said.


NBC Chairperson Kobedi also noted that other interesting features will be that of  Representatives from World Bank & Switzerland to share with Botswana on key areas and transformative go-how in archiving a high income economy.  “We will have presentations from the World Bank to lead us in unpacking the concepts of a high-income economy. Discussions around youth business and small to medium enterprise will also take the spotlight, as we explore how these can be mobilized to incorporate greater economic diversity for the country", said Mr Kobedi.

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